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Tattooed Tipsarevic eliminates Hewitt in 1st round

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Tattooed Tipsarevic eliminates Hewitt in 1st round

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) His heavily tattoed arms include one in Japanese that says, ``Beauty Will Save the World.''

No. 8-ranked Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia says his wife has barred him from getting more - and he listens to her because his rise through the rankings started when they married in 2010.

``Honestly, I don't know why but from the moment I got married I started producing great results,'' Tipsarevic said during a humorous on-court interview after beating Lleyton Hewitt 7-6 (4), 7-5, 6-3 in the first-round of the Australian Open on Monday.

Hewitt's first-round exit brought an abrupt halt to his long-running effort to end a drought for Australian men at Melbourne Park dating back to 1976. He has played a record 17 consecutive Australian Opens and was cheered on by a packed center court crowd that chanted his name: ``Let's go Lleyton, let's go!''

The 3-hour, 2-minute match was filled with exciting points and fast-paced scrambling on both sides of the net. It tipped in Tipsarevic's favor during the second set when he was a double break down but powered back aided by big serves to win.

``He's such a good ball striker. Even when I did attack he came up with some unbelievable passing shots,'' said the former No. 1-ranked Hewitt, and winner of 2001 U.S. Open and 2002 Wimbledon. ``His scrambling and passing shots from out of position were exceptional tonight.''

Known for his towering self-confidence, Hewitt's post-match comments were more humble than a day earlier. When asked Sunday if he felt unlucky to have drawn the No. 8 seed in the first round, Hewitt replied with typical bravado: ``I don't care. I'll knock him off, try to take his spot in the draw.''

For now, the Serbian's spot in the draw is secure. He was elated by his win, saying he had expected a tough match from Hewitt but was stunned by his stamina.

``It's really amazing. I mean, the guy had so many injuries, and he is turning 32 this year, and the balls that he's making you play just to finish the point!'' said Tipsarevic, a U.S. Open quarterfinalist last year. ``I really needed to produce some extraordinary tennis.''

Tipsarevic turned pro in 2002 and was ranked 46 when he married Serbian TV host, Biljana Sesevic, in July 2010. Coincidentally or not, from then on he steadily climbed the rankings, breaking into the top 10 in Nov 2011 and has remained ever since.

Asked about the body art on his arms, he said he has six tattoos and doesn't regret any but is taking a break.

``I am currently on an embargo from my wife not allowing me to do any more,'' he said.

He faces Lukas Lacko in the second round, after the Slovak defeated Gilles Muller 6-2, 6-4, 7-6 (3).

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GOLD, BABY: If all her money just vanishes one day, Venus Williams can always cash in on her Olympic gold medals.

``I have hid them in a sack,'' she said with a smile, when asked where she keeps all her medals. ``One day if I become a statistic and I lose all my money, then I have to melt all the gold off.''

Joking aside, Williams has won four gold medals, including three from winning women's doubles alongside sister Serena at the 2012 London Olympics, the 2008 Beijing Games and 2000 Sydney Games. In Sydney she also won the singles tournament.

But it's the most recent one from London that helped lift her spirits.

Williams took a seven-month break from tennis after being diagnosed in 2011 with an autoimmune disease that can cause fatigue. She returned to tennis in March and went on to win the Wimbledon doubles trophy followed by her latest Olympic medal.

``Gold, gold, gold, baby. So you know, that was awesome,'' Williams said after advancing to the second round with a 6-1, 6-0 win over Galina Voskoboeva of Kazakhstan.

At 32, she's not talking about retirement yet but once she quits tennis she knows what she does not want to do.

``Hopefully, like I said, I won't run out of money and have to commentate,'' she said, again laughing. ``But if I do, I will be commentating.''

Her 18 years in tennis have built up a decent nest egg of $28.5 million in career prize money.

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COMEBACK TRAIL: Sam Querrey is the highest-ranked - and only seeded - American man at the Australian Open this year, but he doesn't think of himself as the leader of the U.S. team.

World No. 13 John Isner would have been the highest-ranked American in Melbourne, but he had to pull out with bone bruising in his right knee, leaving No. 22 Querrey as the Americans' top player in the men's draw.

``Serena's probably the real leader,'' Querrey quipped after his 6-7 (2), 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 first-round win over Spanish qualifier Daniel Munoz-De La Nava on Monday.

``I'm cheering for the other guys and they're cheering for me so we're all in it together, but I don't feel like too much of a leader.''

A year ago, Querrey was just happy to get into the Australian Open without having to play the qualifying tournament. An injury to his right elbow led to surgery that sidelined him for months in 2011, causing his ranking to fall to No. 125. He lost in the second round in Melbourne last year to Australian Bernard Tomic.

Querrey has spent the past year and a half trying to climb back up the rankings, playing several second-tier Challenger events to earn back points he lost.

His next opponent in Melbourne is another American on the comeback trail - Brian Baker. The 27-year-old Baker also had surgery on his right elbow, in February 2008, one of five major operations he underwent over a six-year span. Baker started 2012 ranked No. 456 in the world; by the end of the year, he was up to 61st.

Querrey and Baker have only played each other once - at a Challenger event in Sarasota, Florida, last April. Querrey won that match in three sets.

``We've both sort of come a long way since then,'' Querrey said.

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Associated Press writer Justin Bergman contributed to this report.

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Capitals at Ducks: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

Capitals at Ducks: Time, TV Channel, Live Stream, How to Watch

Coming off of the adrenaline-pumping 5-1 win over the Sharks on Thursday, the Capitals (32-19-7) will face off against the Anaheim Ducks (22-27-9) Sunday evening. The Capitals hope to maintain their energy with a win over the Ducks, the second-worst team in the Pacific Division.
 
The Ducks broke a seven-game losing streak (which began towards the end of January) to the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday, but lost again to the Boston Bruins on Friday. The Ducks are seventh in the Pacific Division, only slightly above the Los Angeles Kings.


Here is everything you need to know about the Sunday night, which takes place at 9 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Washington.


CAPITALS at DUCKS HOW TO WATCH


What: Washington Capitals at Anaheim Ducks, Game 59 of the 2018-19 NHL Regular Season
Where: Honda Center, Anaheim, Calif.
When: 9 p.m. ET
TV Channel: The Capitals at Ducks game will be broadcast on NBC Sports Washington (Channel Finder Link)
Live Stream: You can live stream Capitals at Ducks on NBC Sports Washington's live stream page and on the NBC Sports App.
Radio: Caps 24/7 Radio, 106.7 The Fan FM

CAPITALS at DUCKS TV SCHEDULE


8 PM: Caps Faceoff Live
8:30 PM: Caps Pregame Live
9 PM: Capitals at Ducks
11:30 PM: Caps Postgame Live
12 AM: Caps Overtime Live


CAPITALS at DUCKS INJURY REPORT

Capitals: 
No injuries to report.

Ducks: 
Ryan Miller -- knee injury as of Feb. 15. 
Nick Ritchie -- illness as of Feb. 15.
Chad Johnson -- head injury as of Feb. 13. 
John Gibson -- back, neck and head injuries as of Feb. 8. 
Patrick Eaves -- flu-like symptoms as of Feb. 7. 
Ondrej Kase -- torn labrum in his right shoulder as of Jan. 18. 

CAPITALS at DUCKS PLAYERS TO WATCH

Alex Ovechkin, F, Capitals (39 goals, 27 assists, 66 points): Ovechkin is the leading goal scorer in the NHL. In the Caps’ last game against the Sharks, the team captain contributed one goal and one assist in the team’s blowout 5-1 win.

T.J. Oshie, F, Capitals (18 goals, 18 assists, 36 points): Oshie scored his 500th career point in his second goal against the Sharks on Thursday. He’s been a key player on the ice this February, scoring three goals and contributing with five assists. 

CAPITALS vs. DUCKS SERIES HISTORY


Number of all-time Meetings: 36
All-Time Series Record: Ducks lead 18-17-1
Last Meeting: Ducks win 6-5 (12/2/18)

MORE CAPITALS NEWS: 

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Former Nationals GM thinks the Bryce Harper sweepstakes are almost over

Former Nationals GM thinks the Bryce Harper sweepstakes are almost over

Another day, another favorite in the Bryce Harper sweepstakes.

It’s not a completely new team this time around, but former baseball executive and current analyst Jim Bowden feels pretty confident in the Philadelphia Phillies landing the services of the star outfielder.

“I keep hearing there’s a lot of momentum and traction here on him going and signing with the Philadelphia Phillies,” Bowden shared on CBS Sports HQ. “And he could be rounding third and heading home shortly.”

Bowden appeared on the program to help react to the most recent betting odds on Harper, specifically those that have the San Francisco Giants as the clear favorites. Bowden disagrees with that projection, especially considering the length of the offers involved. 

It’s clear the Giants are hoping to sign Harper to a short term deal, but the former Nationals general manager is convinced the outfielder will end up getting a significantly longer deal.

10 years, $300 million is of course the terms of the deal the Nationals reportedly offered Harper months ago as the offseason was getting underway, so if he’s been holding out for a better contract then the Phillies may be forced to top it.

One point Bowden made during the interview was how badly Harper wants to win “right now.” The Giants, Padres, and White Sox don’t appear ready to truly compete for another few seasons, which is why he so emphatically endorses Philadelphia or Washington as the ultimate destination. 

The Phillies and Nats look like the only two competitors who can feasibly win the World Series as early as 2019, and if that’s truly important to Harper, it helps weed out the competition.

Of course, as with the litany of Bryce Harper rumors we’ve heard all winter long, this comes with a baseball-sized grain of salt. 

Various teams have taken turns atop the leaderboard when it comes to guessing where Harper will end up, and while the Phillies are probably the most consistent favorite of the offseason, there’s obviously a reason why they and/or Harper have yet to pull the trigger on a deal. 

The fit seems clear, and the money is there, but for now, Harper is still unemployed, which means every team still has an opportunity to wow him with an offer. It wouldn’t too be surprising if he ultimately ends up in Philadelphia, and if Jim Bowden is to be believed, that news could be coming sooner rather than later.

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